Why Companies Are Having Gen Y Retention Problems

Gen Y is typically identified as being a fickle and wavering group of individuals. Here today, gone tomorrow. On to the next job. Attributed to becoming bored, seeking enjoyment or following the road, Millennials are known for moving on. In fact, many of our studies show that millennials leave their corporations at the two-year mark. In comparison, Gen X stays about five years and Baby Boomers stay about seven years at a company before leaving.

What is the cause of all of this? What are some of the reasons that Gen Y has seemingly lost its loyalty to long-term job commitment? Through experience and observation, these seem to suggest some causes:

  • An unstable economy has caused Gen Y to devalue the tenure of a position. Even if you stayed with the same company for 30 years, what’s the payoff for remaining when benefits, pensions and investments are not guaranteed?
  • The company gets what it gives. As companies become less loyal to their employees, employees become less loyal to the companies. Gen Y especially sees disloyalty as a major red flag and a cue to exit.
  • Millennials crave exploring the next opportunity to discover, create and expand. Sometimes called dreamers; this generation has an entrepreneurial nature that searches for freedom, limitlessness and fulfillment.
  • Suppressive, rigid, traditional corporate cultures don’t match the mindset of this generation. Gen Y workers are less tolerant of work environments that don’t reflect personal values, opinions and/or feelings toward change.
  • Much of this generation is still in search of the purpose of life. Either because they don’t know what they want to do when they grow up or they aren’t sure how to get there. Sometimes they’re just passing through in search of where they fit.
  • Gen Y is an entitled group. This group was raised to expect, receive and question everything. This sense of privilege has caused some in this group to lack patience in developing professionally, an unconcern with paying their dues and a different perception of how “work” should work.

What’s your opinion? Have you seen this happening in your organization? In what ways does your company counteract these reasons for Gen Y’s lack of loyalty?

– This post was written by Carrie Bowe, an Intern at Millennial Branding

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